Passing the torch, Mark Black is Retiring Today

Today is bittersweet, our longest serving team member is retiring today.  Mark Black, dagger-maker extraordinaire, joined Arms and Armor in the early 1980's and was the first employee of founder Chris Poor.  He's been with us for nigh on 40 years but now it's time to leave the sword rat-race to others. 

Mark in an old-timey photo using the mill
Mark is a master craftsman who creates most of our daggers, among other things.  He is also a professional musician and a founder of Savage Aural Hotbed, one of the first Industrial music acts in the Midwest, and The Other Country Ensemble.  Here's a cool public radio article about them from 2009 on their 20th anniversary as a band. 
German Parrying Dagger Made by Mark, check out all of our daggers here.
To commemorate Marks retirement, and to celebrate his many contribution to Arms and Armor, and just because he's our friend and we are going to miss seeing him everyday, we are having a celebratory happy hour at the shop today, Friday March 29, 2024, where we will toast to Mark's new endeavors.  Come on down and shake his hand if you're around, 4-5:30pm today at Arms and Armor.  
Good bye Mark

divider swords

Nathan Clough, Ph.D. is Vice President of Arms and Armor and a member of the governing board of The Oakeshott Institute. He is a historical martial artist and a former university professor of cultural geography.  He has given presentations on historical arms at events including Longpoint and Combatcon, and presented scholarly papers at, among others, The International Congress on Medieval Studies.

Craig Johnson is the Production Manager of Arms and Armor and Secretary of The Oakeshott Institute. He has taught and published on the history of arms, armor and western martial arts for over 30 years. He has lectured at several schools and Universities, WMAW, HEMAC, 4W, and ICMS at Kalamazoo. His experiences include iron smelting, jousting, theatrical combat instruction and choreography, historical research, European martial arts and crafting weapons and armor since 1985

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